Title: Yearn
Author: DaMoyre
E-mail: damoyre@aol.com
Pairings: Will/Elizabeth (vaguely, Jack/Elizabeth)
Rating: PG
Summary: Elizabeth is unable to fall asleep.
Notes: Written for pirates500 second challenge, "Unfulfilled Longings."

Elizabeth runs her fingers over Will's hand while he sleeps. The calluses have softened over the past few months, and someday, all the rough edges of his fingers will be smooth; there won't be a testimony of his past as a sword maker. When they make love, Elizabeth closes her eyes and enjoys his touch, but she wonders if worshipful kisses and tender caresses are all there is to lovemaking.

She imagines someone else's hand cupping her breast; someone claiming her mouth in a passionate kiss that leaves her breathless. She wonders what it would be like being ravished with the force of a sea tempest, and trading her husband's clean breath for a lover whose breath always reeks of rum.

The way her body trembles at the sole thought is shaming. A proper lady should not nurture such desires; a proper lady owes herself to her husband.

A proper lady would have married the commodore, and not a blacksmith turned pirate.

She knows her sense of propriety has long been lost, and that perhaps she never had any at all. She doesn't know if she should be relieved or anguished.

It's impossible to sleep in this heat. She tosses away the sheets and climbs out of bed, careful not to disturb Will. The cadence of his light snore is an eternal lullaby, and on most nights she falls asleep to it, and to the sound of the sea.

From her window, Elizabeth watches the ocean, the waves breaking ashore. The wet sand looks dark blue, like the velvet robe she once bought in England, but will surely never wear. Velvet was not made for Port Royal. And perhaps, neither was Elizabeth Swann.

She returns to bed, to her husband, and presses her palm flat on his back. His skin is moist and she procures a taste with a soft kiss. Salty, like the sea. She wonders if they will always live in Port Royal, anchored to the town, to the routine. The adventure that brought them together is now but a dream, and they might never see other harbors.

She knows there is something else out there, something that calls to her. And there is only one who could understand her yearning. On nights like this, she always thinks of him...

"Ye see, land-lubbers and pirates are different animals, different souls. If ye don't understand the sea, ye can never understand the heart of a pirate. Us, we go wherever the wind blows and take what we want at the opportune moment. There's no barriers that hold us back. And that, love, that is true freedom."

Sleepless, she presses her cheek to the white sheets, while her mind is filled with greens and blues and coral reds. Will stirs in bed and whispers her name. Even in his sleep, Will thinks of her. And she knows she could never leave his side, even if her heart is somewhere else, navigating far away, aboard the Black Pearl.

She waits for sleep to come, so she can sail again.